Skip to main content

Written by: John Barkel

Recently, I was able to attend an administrator’s conference alongside non-public and faith-based school administrators. The keynote speaker of the conference taught us an interesting and valuable lesson for leading our schools and simply going through life. The message was, “Be a buffalo. Go to your storm.” 

We learned that out west storms will roll in off the mountains into the pasturelands where buffalo and cattle graze. During these storms, buffalo will instinctually charge into the storm knowing they will get through it faster. Cattle, on the other hand, will do all they can to avoid the storm, even though the storm will ultimately catch up to them, and they will endure it for a longer period of time. 

What a fitting analogy for life. It seems safe to say we have all faced or are facing a storm of some kind. I’ve certainly done my fair share of being a cow when storms roll in. When I’ve avoided challenges, no doubt those challenges seem to creep back in and are way worse than if I faced them head-on. When facing challenges, the challenges are certainly very real, but these challenges will get worse and worse if we attempt to avoid them.

Being a buffalo, and facing our challenges is important. What’s additionally important is HOW we face those challenges. Approaching our challenges with love, empathy, humility, and grace can make all the difference.

I want to encourage you to focus a lot on these skills as a leader in your sphere of influence. Blessings to you as you go forward.

Be a buffalo. Go to your storm!

John Barkel is the Principal at Grand Rapids Christian Elementary School – Iroquois Campus a preK-4 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Photo is from Google Images.

Leave a Reply